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An Exhibition of Conservative Paranoia

Exhibit 36: Joseph Farah, Terrorist Sympathizer

WorldNetDaily treats the fantasy of right-wing South African militants as fact.

By Eric Goodwin
Posted 11/25/2005

On Feb. 9, 2004, a startling headline in WND caught my attention: "White slaughter in South Africa?" followed by the subhead: "Plans made to conduct genocide after Mandela's death." The report is from Joseph Farah's G2 Bulletin, the "online, subscription intelligence news service from the creator of" This news, to my amazement, had gone totally unreported in South Africa.

Intrigued, I read on.

The report commences with the assertion that "plans are being made by the nation's Communist Party to slaughter all whites in the country upon his [Mandela's] death" according to Farah's nameless "G2B sources." Farah then goes on to breathlessly recount that one of the planned operations "entails 70,000 armed black men 'being transported to the Johannesburg city center within an hour' in taxicabs to attack whites."

According to Farah's mysterious "G2B sources," the armed men would then proceed to seize control of fuel points and commence with the massacre of whites. This in turn would lead to a Communist Party directed coup whereby President Thabo Mbeki would be replaced by Cyril Ramaphosa, a top South African businessman. Farah's anonymous "G2B sources" further maintain that "most blacks in the country are aware of the plans."

These are indeed startling claims; somehow the intrepid Farah has stumbled upon a vast conspiracy embracing millions of black South Africans, which entails the overthrow of the government for which most of them voted, the mass murder of the white population and the installation of Ramaphosa as leader. The driving force behind this operation, variously named "Operation Vula," "Night of the Long Knives," "Operation White Clean-up," "Operation Iron Eagle," "Red October campaign," "Operation Our Rainy Day," and "Operation Uhuru," is the South African Communist Party.

One wonders at the amazing organizational abilities of the tiny South African Communist Party, able to disseminate their strategies widely amongst the black population whilst cunningly excluding those black South Africans who might inform Mbeki of the fate being planned for him. Ramaphosa, a longtime African National Congress official and the main beneficiary of the purported coup, is presumably in on the whole plot. Shrewdly disguised as one of South Africa's top businessmen who has benefited massively from Mbeki's black economic empowerment policies -- serving on the board of directors of several companies including South African Breweries, owner of Miller Brewing in the U.S. -- he presumably has clear motives for overturning the current status quo.

WND employs one of its trademark techniques in this article -- namely, not providing any means whereby these wild claims can be verified. However, the content of the article represents an outlook beloved amongst South African right-wingers. This worldview has been clearly articulated during the long-running trial of the Boeremag conspirators.

In 2003, 22 people belonging to a right-wing group called the Boeremag were arrested on a number of charges including murder and the illegal possession of weapons and explosives. According to reports, the 22 were planning to overthrow the state, herd all blacks onto the highways and drive them out of the country. This bizarre plan commenced with a series of bomb blasts in Soweto in 2002. One person died in this bombing campaign. Plans to blow up airports and major national dams were also conceived, but never carried out.

During the trial it emerged that the visions of a Boer prophet, Siener (seer) Nicolaas van Rensburg, played an important ideological role in the Boeremag conspiracy. Van Rensburg made his prophecies in the late 19th and early 20th century, the most famous being the prediction of the death of the Boer General de la Rey, who defeated the British in several battles during the Boer War.

In court, the defendants maintained that van Rensburg had prophesied a "Night of Terror" or "Night of the Long Knives" when hordes of black men would descend upon whites and massacre them. Some of his prophecies were also taken to mean that whites should rise up and re-establish the old Boer republics of the Transvaal and Orange Free State.

The South African Press Association reported on Feb. 3, 2004, that during the Boeremag trial, the lawyer acting for one of the conspirators, Mike du Toit, maintained that at meetings of the Boeremag, operations such as "Operation White Clean-up," "Operation Vula," "Night of the Long Knives," Operation Iron Eagle," and the "Red October" campaign had been discussed.

According to du Toit's lawyer, "'Operation Eagle' would have been carried out by the defence force and entailed 70,000 armed black men being transported in taxis to the Johannesburg city centre to kill whites."

The "Red October" campaign, according to du Toit's lawyer, "was allegedly a communist plot to oust President Thabo Mbeki and to massacre whites and Vula was aimed at ousting Mbeki and replacing him with Cyril Ramaphosa."

This story bears an uncanny resemblance to the story published on WND some six days later. There are two possible reasons for this: that Farah's "G2B sources" do not exist (and Farah merely plagiarized elements of the original article, which we know he is prone to), or that his informants are Boeremag sympathizers. And the trial of the Boeremag conspirators is not mentioned in WND's account, even though the article from which WND apparently lifted its account is based on testimony from that trial.

I have trawled the WND archives, attempting to find out whether WND has published any report at all on the Boeremag plot to overthrow the government, but came up with nothing. The only mention at all of the Boeremag by WND is in a July 2004 article by Anthony LoBaido -- who has previously painted sympathetic portraits of South African right-wingers -- claiming that the African National Congress "has had to invent the Boeremag (a small, extremist group accused of planning to overthrow the government). There is no threat from the so-called 'right wing' to the government."

It seems that the inimitable Mr. Farah has ignored reports and evidence of a real plot involving bombings, murder and downright terrorism, in favor of presenting a fantasy concocted by South African right-wingers as if it were a hard, verifiable fact.

WND readers should be more than a little wary of believing its reporting on South African matters without cross-checking the facts with other sources. Otherwise, its utterly surreal portrayal of South Africa can be quite entertaining.

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